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REPLACING OUR AARP CREDIT CARDS WITH BARCLAY BANK CARDS - SEE POSTSCRIPT WRITTEN 09/21/21 and 09-24

Has anyone else been concerned about the closing of our current AARP credit cards and its effect on our credit scores? We've had our VISA for many years and have built a lot of history with them. Now AARP is going to CLOSE those accounts and replace them with a new one that won't have any history. Just closing the account will lower our scores significantly. We, for one, don't want to use the Barclay cards, which offer significantly less rewards, so the total amount of our credit will be reduced, another factor in the building of our credit scores.

 

What do you think?

 

POST-  Postscript 09-21-21: To head off what I was sure would be a catastrophe, and after looking up references on Barclay, we created a new Chase CC account (on August 12th, received it on the 15th), set up our auto-pay bills, and set up the new account for auto-pay from our bank. We paid off the balance on the old AARP account by 09-08-21, and cashed in all our rewards. Then today, we activated the Barclay account (online) and immediately canceled it (by automated phone call). We're in the process of setting up a second Chase card to compensate for the first CC account lower credit limit. Guess we're  lucky to have managed to get through to our Barclay account. Keep trying, folks, and don't hold back on your comments to both companies. They certainly could have done a better job of planning all this. Giving their customers a voice in the choice should have been STEP NUMBER ONE.

 

AND yet another POSTSCRIPT on 09-24: Today Barlcays was daring enough to send us a 'welcome' email with a reminder to activate our card, to which we replied,

 

"Thanks, but no thanks!

 
We didn't, and don't, want your card. We have already activated and immediately cancelled our Barclay cards.
 
For those poor folks who are, to this day, still trying to activate their card or just talk to a live person at your company, we extend our sympathy. Your company has made what should have been a direct and automated process so overly labor-intensive for so many seniors that you won't soon be forgotten or forgiven.
 
Shame on AARP for choosing you and shame on you for being so ill-prepared to handle the conversion.
 
Signed, 'notsoyoung'
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Periodic Contributor

AARP Member Benefits Team here to help. We certainly understand your concern regarding the service provided by Barclays. We’d be happy to forward your concern to the Escalation team we work with at Barclays for their thorough review and investigation if you’d like. To do this, we will need more information. Please send me a private message in the AARP Online Community by clicking this link and entering my username, “AARPLakeisha” into the “Send to” box https://community.aarp.org/t5/notes/composepage. Please provide the following details in your message:

  • Your first & last name
  • AARP membership number (or home address)
  • Best contact phone number

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate you informing us of your concern. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

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Honored Social Butterfly

You really need more info to comment on what has happended.

Did Chase choose not to renew the program as it was or did AARP choose to move it. The 3% dinning cash back was a major part of the current program and should have been part of the new program if AARP was the party who wanted to move.

As I read the new benefits there is a push in the AARP material on money going to the AARP foundation. Did AARP end the 3% dinning cash back in favor of more money to the foundation. If that happended AARP will pay a price for reducing member benefits in favor of increased money for its internal programs. If they had gotten members ok before doing it that would have been fine.

We need to have an answer from AARP on what took place as the new benefits to members are not as good as the old.

Retired Moderator

@notsoyoung  Hi there, here to help clarify. Your existing Chase tradeline on your credit bureau report will be updated to reflect Barclays as the issuing bank. This will not appear as a new or secondary trade line, but will simply update the existing one. The history associated with your prior Chase trade line, including account open date and recent payment history, will still remain visible. The changing of the issuing bank will not impact your credit score, but your credit bureau report may take up to 60 days to update following the transfer. Regarding rewards, all existing Chase cash back reward points will be transferred to Barclays. The only difference is Barclays uses reward dollars instead of points as Chase does, making it easier for Cardmembers to understand the value of their rewards instead of having to calculate how much a Chase point is worth in dollars and cents. The Chase points will have the same value as Barclays rewards.

 

These specific questions, plus more are also addressed in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) at the top right of the Barclays microsite for Chase Cardmembers at https://www.aarpcreditcard.com/barclays/

I hope this helps!

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Periodic Contributor

Sorry that a retired minister has to say: "What a bunch of **bleep**!" I have called every day for 4 days and let the phone on speaker-phone. Twice a live voice told me my card could not be activated and I should wait for a "Relationship Manager" who never came on. Four days and what has AARP done to tell Barclays they must solve this problem NOW? You do not say CHASE was unwilling to renew the contract, just that Barclays would give AARP a % gift. I do not buy this fiasco and will not go to Barclays! I've already applied for a CHASE Freedom Unlimited card. [private email address removed to protect your online privacy]

Periodic Contributor

@jimgo8327 

AARP Member Benefits Team here to help. We certainly understand your concern regarding the service provided by Barclays. We’d be happy to forward your concern to the Escalation team we work with at Barclays for their thorough review and investigation if you’d like. To do this, we will need more information. Please send me a private message in the AARP Online Community by clicking this link and entering my username, “AARPLakeisha” into the “Send to” box https://community.aarp.org/t5/notes/composepage. Please provide the following details in your message:

  • Your first & last name
  • AARP membership number (or home address)
  • Best contact phone number

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate you informing us of your concern. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

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Periodic Contributor

AARP may have engaged in a long and rigorous process, but it failed.  I just signed up for a Capital One Savor card.  3% on dining, entertainment, streaming services and most important groceries.  1% on everything else.  Aloha Barclays as soon as I can get someone on the phone, I am cancelling their card.  It may take a week or two given how many problems they have.

Periodic Contributor

After talking to 6 people since Monday and a minimun of 1 hour on hold for each, they could not fix the proplem with validating my online access.  The last person I talked to was able to transfer me to an account specialist and within 5 minutes I cancelled the account.  It seems cancelling an account is easier than fixing problems.

Periodic Contributor

AARP's reply here is such a hoot. If Barclays is the best you could do based on my and everyone else's experience you have no business marketing any credit card. Your reputation has been indelibly stained. I doubt there is anything that AARP can do to to fix the hot mess that they have put themselves in.

Periodic Contributor

Not at all - I was totally satisfied with my AARP Chase Card and the cashback benefits it offered - neither BARCLAYS cards come close to fulfilling that.  I believe I'll have to quit AARP once my membership expires --- so disappointed in the organization!

Newbie

I'm totally disappointed in Barclays and have been trying to get on line to see my statement since they transferred from Chase.  I abnsolutely loved Chase.  Barclays, no so much.  I've tried several times to establish a user name and password to no avail.  I've called and been on hold several times for a lenghty amount of time.  When they finally answer they transfer me to someone who isn't there or they are closed at this time.  I did get my call through to them at the very beginning so they could draft me; however, she wasn't interested in helped me get on-line and suggested that I go there to BarclaycardUS.com.  I tried several times until it told me that my account was locked.  Not locked to charging or drafting me but locked to my access.  I'm really exhausted and hate to have to deal with them until 2026.  I just need a real live person to help unlock my account.  This morning I was transferred by a nice man to "tech support" where I got a message that they were closed today.  This is the worst service of any business or credit card and if I could get on Barclay help, I would advise them.  I hope someone out there who can help me will so so. [PERSONAL INFORMATION REMOVED FOR YOUR SECURITY]

 

Periodic Contributor

Hi @sc66664433 , here to help! We certainly understand your concern regarding the AARP Credit Card provided by Barclays. We would be glad to work with the Escalation team at Barclays to have this investigated for you. If you are still having difficulties with your AARP Credit Card from Barclays, please either give us a call at 1-888-OUR-AARP (1-888-687-2277) to request an Escalation or send me a private message in the AARP Online Community by clicking this link and entering my username, “AARPThelmaG” into the “Send to” box https://community.aarp.org/t5/notes/composepage. Please provide the following details in your message:

  • Full name
  • AARP Membership # (or home address)
  • Phone # and email address to contact you
  • Description of your issue

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate you informing us of your concern. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

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Trusted Contributor

I went through living hell for 5 months to recuperate 1800 US DOLLARS that were "in limbo" due to the transition. I took it to smalls claim court, was granted my cash plus interest in addition to another 300 for the frustration generated.

I suggest pulling out of both BARCLAYS AND AARP, as I did. I now have a Capital One card which is a dream! Clients are given the utmost respect and great customer care.

Periodic Contributor

On hold now for 2 hours 20 minutes and continuing trying to fix a phone number issue on my 92 year old mother's account. REALLY?!?!?!?!?! Barclays is totally unprepared for this changeover. What financial incentive did they offer AARP? I cannot imagine what AARP was thinking when they screwed up millions of cardholders by choosing a financial institution that is incapable of rendering service. BADLY, BADLY DONE AARP. Totally lost faith in your stated concern for members. This debacle proves your are NOT concerned about service to members.

Community Concierge

@vcwalker1951 Thank you for taking the time to reach out. Some of Barclays’ customer-facing channels have been reported as down and/or experiencing extended hold times. Some customers cannot service any of their requests online or via telephony. We apologize for the inconvenience, please try again tomorrow. 

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Contributor

I will not accept this card. They raised my interest rate by 10 points. How much is Barclays paying AARP.

Trusted Contributor

I have wondered what Barclays has done to get this contract which is one big fiasco!

 

 

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Periodic Contributor

Janelle, Sorry that you and Lakeisha have to make flimsy excuses for this mess. It no longer makes sense to say, "customer-facing channels have been reported as down". If they can't be fixed in five days there is something far more serious happening here. This is AARP's business! If they can't, or will not, demand satisfaction from Barclays, then this organization doesn't have what it takes for me to trust them on anything.

Trusted Contributor

I suggest pulling out of both AARP and BARCLAYS. So many people already have. I swiftly got a CAPITOL ONE credit card and they treated me like royalty!

I have resorted to consulting a lawyer tomorrow. I am still waiting for around 1800 US DOLLARS in merchant refunds.

Periodic Contributor

The problem with try again tomorrow is that Tomorrow never comes.  I waited 3 tomorrows for them to fix a simple problem.  Talked to 1 person Monday, 1 person Tuesday, 3 people Wednesday, and 1 person Today and they could not fix the problem.  I was able to cancel the account in less than 5 minutes.  Much better than the 10 hours total that I spent on hold.  I was not going to wait for another tomorrow knowing I would have to wait on hold for over an hour.

Periodic Contributor

On hold for 4 hours and 4 minutes now and counting...online activation does not work, phone activation does not work either. for me or my mom.  Ridiculous.

 

Periodic Contributor

Well, congratulations. The changeover is a total screw up. Barclays seems to be completely unprepared. On hold 2 hours and counting to fix a phone number. AARP, you have really messed up with ALL your members holding credit cards. I believe a financial advantage to AARP was the sole motivating factor behind no renewing the Chase contract. Badly Done AARP.

Contributor

I tried logging in to activate my card and the system data did not match. All lines are busy and on hold over one hour. Still no contact. What a mess!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Newbie

Well I did get to activate my card, but then tied to set up phone numbers and contact information. Message said sorry something happened please try again later. Yep that was the 20th. Today is the 22nd. I am still locked out of my account as the phone number they show is a landline and they sure as heck dont call it! I did get an email that said my security changes have been saved. Hmmm. Wonder what???? Upset.

Periodic Contributor

I had the same problem with landline phone number as the only ones that could be used to validate my account.  Gave them cell phone number but after 3 days it still was not a choice.  They could remove a number immediatly, however.  Talked 6 people, on hold over 10 hours total, and no resolution.  I have cancelled the account.  Only took 5 minutes.

Moderator
Moderator

@rb2865 

For the conversion, Barclays transferred all of your personal information that was available from your old account. If not recently updated, some of this information may be outdated.  When attempting to activate with Barclays, the information you entered may not have matched what they have on file, which resulted in not being able to complete activation.  If you have not already, please contact Barclays directly to review and update your information so that you can finish activating your new card and register your online account with no issues. Please note, Barclays is experiencing higher than normal call volume and extended hold times.

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Periodic Contributor

I disagree with your reply. When I finally was able to get a live person at Barclays  on 9/20 (after 4 hours and 20 minutes on hold), the agent told me they had my mother's birthdate as a 8-1-33.  My mother wasnt even alive in 1933!  Then the Barclays person told me that from the calls she had been dealing with all day, it looks like many people's birthdates and/or phone numbers were transferred over incorrectly. Whatever third party provider was used in this transfer - whether it was off shore or done right here in the USA, it appears people were making up info and just entering whatever.  To correct the birthdate, my mother had to call from the phone number attributed to her account  (the primary user) (meaning I could not call from my phone on her behalf), and wait on hold for someone in Barclay's security department to correct the birthdate  It took more than an hour on hold, but my dear 85 year old mom was finally able to correct her birthdate to the one she has had and the only birthdate she has ever used for the past 85.5 years!!!

 

2 hours and holding

absolutely, disappointed by entire transition ..No access to chase nor Barclay

Periodic Contributor

As much as I dislike change, I can easily accommodate change that is in my best interest. I particularly dislike change that appears to be to my disadvantage. I can’t say I completely understand the Barclay credit card yet but here is what I’ve discovered in the short time I’ve had the limited information provided by AARP:

1) Barclay is not a US company. It has a US presence but is headquartered in the UK.

2) It appears that much higher interest rates are likely.

3) An arbitration clause, a big difference from the AARP Chase Visa.

4) No extended warranty on eligible purchases. Barclay is one of a very few companies that has stripped this protection from their credit cards.

5) No more 3% reward on dining. I find that very disappointing.

6) Perhaps most disturbing is the information on the Barclay website does not match the information I received from AARP. Reference: https://cards.barclaycardus.com/banking/cards/aarp-essential-rewards-mastercard/

7) I cannot tell if Barclay is doing a hard credit check on AARP Chase Visa holders, something that will impact an AARP Cardholder’s credit report for 2 years.

😎 One Barclay website indicates only 12 months of statements are available online. I find that unacceptable. I can’t tell if Barclay provides a year end summary or how long it may be available. I find year end summaries helpful when preparing my tax returns. 

9) Enhanced rewards for many medical expenses is a positive.

10) Barclay apparently takes full advantage to share cardholder information with little opportunity to limit that ability.

11) I’m guessing the up to $1Million to Essential Connections is a good thing but have no way to compare that to funding from Chase.

12) It appears I will be unable to change my payment due date. 
13) AARP should have insisted on Barclay sending the Cardmember Agreement before the card arrives.

 

It appears to me AARP may have dropped the ball, perhaps unaware the Chase agreement was ending. Barclay is well known to provide company branded credit cards. Perhaps this was an easy out for AARP. I suggest this decision be reversed, I would be surprised if Chase wouldn’t extend the agreement temporarily, and a proper due diligence search for a replacement be conducted.

 

I suggest the AARP Board address this problem to its members and especially those of us who have come to appreciate this Chase Visa card. This was poorly handled. 

 

 

Info Seeker

I totally agree.  Silly me, I thought it was just another credit card.  We set up a draw from our savings account.  Their system pulled the full payment twice.  They wouldn't rescind either of the draws since we might have made additional charges.  We decided to close the account and requested that no further charges be accepted and waited until all outstanding charges would be in the system and the balance would be at zero.  Then we called to terminate the account and we would be done with Barclays.  No such luck.  Now they decided to rescind a portion of one of the original draws which we then had to rescind.  But at some point, their IT systems added fees and interest on top of the fees and while some of them were reversed, not all of them were.  The account is now in dispute and credit agencies have been notified.  My advice to all Barclays card holders is to get yet another card to replace it if necessary and then hope you can get the account balance to zero before they can make the same kind of mistake with your account.

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